What a year it’s been between Thanksgivings.

I love this gosh darn American holiday now. I’ve been here 20 years next year, and I never realized how much Thanksgiving had become a part of me until now.

In 2013, I celebrated back home in Peru. That was a tough year. It was the only year out of the last 19 that I didn’t have turkey stateside. I cooked at my grandmother’s house in Lima A) duh, to show off my mad cooking skillz and B) because it was tradition…this tradition I’d picked up here and that was starting to pull at me som’in’ serious.

Home is where the heart is, and that year, I didn’t know where home would end up being.

Cut to now. I have a home. My home has my heart. My heart is safe. And this immigrant wishes that your heart is safe, too. That more hearts can feel safe this coming year.

It starts with “Hello,” it involves “Please,” and it ends with “Thank you.” That’s the bare minimum. That’s all it takes to make someone feel safe, feel appreciated. Feel seen.

Bring your love, share your love – and for crying out loud, do not be a shit.

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